A Heart That is Humbled And Sorry For Sin

Throughout the Old Testament we see where there were sacrifices for almost any sin committed, and there were even some for praises to God. As we meditate on these verses today I hope that we will concentrate on those things that are a part of our relationship with God that may be considered sacrifices.

Tuesday, 2022-08-16

Bible Reference: Psalm 51:16-17
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)

Bible Text: 16 You are not pleased by sacrifices, or I would give them. You don’t want burnt offerings.
17 The sacrifice God wants is a broken spirit.
    God, you will not reject a heart that is broken and sorry for sin.

OBSERVATION: Throughout the Old Testament we see where there were sacrifices for almost any sin committed, and there were even some for praises to God. As we meditate on these verses today I hope that we will concentrate on those things that are a part of our relationship with God that may be considered ‘sacrifices’.

APPLICATION: I believe that a good explanation for the act of sacrificing might be when we offer up something as payment for an action performed by us that may not meet the requirements of the person, or God, who sets the rules. Another meaning might be that we are willing to give up something we love very much, so that someone else could benefit from that thing we are willing to give up. So let me mention a few things that I believe we ‘sacrifice’ in place of something near and dear to us: 1). Some may go to church to please someone bugging them to attend church. So they sacrifice time and go through the motions in order to make that person happy, or at least get them off their back! 2). Some may give to the church, or even to the work of God. So they may sacrifice monetarily with hopes that God might credit them for giving to His causes; 3). Some may ‘send’ missionaries to foreign countries. So they sacrifice monetarily, and give time in prayer for them so that the Great Commission (go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel) might be fulfilled. These are just a few examples of sacrifices that we make. I also believe that in all the examples given, these sacrifices might be noble, and even recognized by God, if done in the spirit of sacrifice and holiness. But in the Psalm we are meditating on, David shares what he found to be noble and trustworthy in a life that is truly after pleasing God. In verse 17 David shared that we must have a broken spirit in order to arrive at the very depth of our heart. I believe this means that we must be at a state where we are willing to let go and let God have His will and way in our lives. But I believe a warning may come with that. For God may remind us of His many blessings and we may get up and attend church without being asked to, or regardless of the way someone looked at us the last time we attended! It may help us to openly declare that since God has blessed us with a good job and a fair income, we will be obedient to His Word and give at least 10% of our gross income, in thanksgiving for His goodness and out of an act of true obedience! We may decide to actually join a missions trip, instead of sending others! Our spirit might become one that is pliable by God. Friends, I believe it is only then that we will be open to hearing God’s voice and obedient to His commands, or pleasing to Him. Are you willing to make this kind of sacrifice for the God who sacrificed His very own Son for you? Isn’t this the least that we could do?

PRAYER: Spirit of God, please descend upon us, Your children, and have Your perfect will and way in our lives today. Please direct our hearts and our minds towards Jesus, and may we be willing to sacrifice self, and become fully obedient to Your perfect will for our lives. Lord, our hearts are broken and desirous of everything You might require of us. Please use us in ways that will bring honor and glory to You oh Lord, our Rock and our Redeemer! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog at https://NuggetsFromGodsWord.org that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading or listening to this devotional, please go to the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and see all of my posts, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Past Efforts vs Our Proven God

Often we will fall back on actions from our past, if God does not step in and overwhelm us with miracles that meet, or exceed, our expectations. In today’s Scripture, the Psalmist reflects on the results of his ancestors doing just this. I’m sure that God’s disciples today (His ministers of the gospel) must struggle with the same challenging question, for in spite of all that God has done, yet we tend to prefer our old practices that often lead to failure. Let’s open our minds to the Word of God today and allow our all-powerful God to show us His wisdom for everything we face today.

DATE POSTED Monday, 2022-08-15
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Pslam 106:19-22
TRANSLATION: Good News Translation (GNT)

BIBLE TEXT: 19 They made a gold bull-calf at Sinai and worshiped that idol; 20 they exchanged the glory of God for the image of an animal that eats grass.
21 They forgot the God who had saved them by his mighty acts in Egypt. 22 What wonderful things he did there! What amazing things at the Red Sea!

APPLICATION: In all walks of life, I believe that we reflect on our past experiences to guide our future endeavors. However, we seem to really struggle with using proven experiences of others or acts of Almighty God to convince us of the path we need to follow. We may have learned this from the Israelites that the Psalmist spoke of in our Scripture today, for they experienced first-hand the miracles that God performed in Egypt to cause Pharoah to change his heart about letting His people go. They saw first-hand how God miraculously protected, fed and cared for a body of people much larger than anything we could imagine. Their experiences included such off-the-chart things that would otherwise have been considered impossible, such as: parting of the waters to provide a pathway for over a million people; striking a rock with a staff to produce water; clothes and shoes that never wore out; manna that fell from heaven in just the right quantities for each day’s meals; etc. So, with all that background, shouldn’t we expect to read in the Bible where the Israelites never wavered from their trust in God? I believe that most readers and listeners will know the remainder of the story about how that was not the case, so I will fast forward to our scenario today. Let me start by reminding us that because of the Bible, we have knowledge about all that God did for our ancestors, and because He did this throughout the course of the whole Bible, and because we know that He is arisen and very much alive today, we have reason to believe that He is just as capable of repeating such miracles today. Because of man’s knowledge, creativity, advancing science and determination to become self-sufficient, we have available to us many new technologies and advancements that we could turn to for knowledge and direction. Do you suppose that might be the reason we look at doctors and ask if our relative will live? So often doctors respond ‘I’m not God, so I can’t answer that question for you’! But I would encourage you today to reflect on the miracles of God – both in Bible times and in your lifetime. I would recommend that you start your day with heart-to-heart conversations with God. Yes, He’s alive and will listen to every praise, complaint or need you might have. His response back to you will be via your Bible reading, or your encounter with another believer who has a word for you – without knowledge about your need. Friends, my God will direct your path, meet your need, love you unconditionally, and be your companion through every aspect of your life. He has a place prepared for you when you graduate from this earth, and He will open the doors of opportunity for you to share His love, His Word and His wisdom while you still have breath and are willing to be used by God here on earth. Let me assure you today, that based on HIS past experiences, you can be assured of tomorrow, and confidence in every challenge you may face today. Only God can do this. Only God’s methods are current and have eternity in mind. You can trust Him, my friend!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: By our actions, others can often tell who our ancestors are. Oh that others will also recognize who our heavenly Father is, based on our words and our actions!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, take my hand. Lead me on, till I stand in Your presence! You already know how determined we are to do life by ourselves and in our own strength. Please be a constant reminder of who You are and what You are capable of doing, so that we may always look to You instead of making the same mistakes we’ve made in the past. Lord, we want to be the best that we could be, and we want to be obedient children. Please mold us into Your likeness and humble us to seek help, instead of thinking we know best. You, oh Lord, are high above the mountains in majesty and glory. Our trust is in You alone, for this old world proves the error of its ways every day. May we keep our hand in Yours and be led through every circumstance of life through Your guidance and with Your protection. Make us more like You so that the world will have earthly proof of who You are. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Easily Swayed

It seems like today we more readily turn away from our faith than on our political views and/or political party affiliation! Paul saw where members of the Corinthian church, for which he had labored over, was easily swayed in their beliefs, so he addressed the issue with hopes of opening their eyes to the tools Satan was using to pull them away from their faith. Since I believe this frequently happens in the faith today, I believe we should take note of Paul’s correction to the church. God used him in person to address the issue with the Corinthian church, and I believe God is challenging the church today through the written words of Paul.

DATE POSTED Sunday, 2022-08-14
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 2 Corinthians 11:3-4
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT:  … I am frightened, fearing that in some way you will be led away from your pure and simple devotion to our Lord, just as Eve was deceived by Satan in the Garden of Eden. You seem so gullible: you believe whatever anyone tells you even if he is preaching about another Jesus than the one we preach, or a different spirit than the Holy Spirit you received, or shows you a different way to be saved. You swallow it all.

APPLICATION: Please don’t let Satan tell you to skip over this devotional, because this may not be a subject that would impact or affect you. I believe the reason God got my attention so strongly on this today is because of the condition of the ‘Christian’ environment around me. Friends, when God places imperfect men, like you and I, in the middle of imperfect people, it is easy for him to be swayed by the popular belief of those around him. To be completely devoted to the God we serve, and the Jesus we accepted to be Lord of our lives, I believe there are some ways that we must be faithful so we could stay true to our commitment. Even after accepting Jesus as Lord, and in spite of the Holy Spirit dwelling inside of us, if we ever allow the adversary sory to distract us on an ongoing basis, he will sway us to be unfaithful stewards. The more we lean towards that unfaithfulness, the more acceptable we become of the trash taught and practiced by those who belong to Satan. I am afraid that too many of us who claim Jesus as Lord of our lives, are living today based on our personal opinions and complete bombardments of a world who has no regard for the constant of God’s Book of Instructions He left for us. So many times in the Bible we come across stories of God leading His people into situations that seem impossible to us, but yet the success of their obedience reveals that God is loving, all-powerful, all-knowing, filled with wisdom, and deliberate in achieving the very best for the long-term benefit of His children. The awesome thing is that I believe He is still God and He still cares for you and I! So, what might be the cause of our distractions, or our losing sight of Gods instructions, or our ease of swaying from the truth of God’s Word? I would dare say that we have become so attached to our devices and televisions that we allow whoever occupies the screen to pour into us. The problem with this, as I see it, is that we think and speak from a heart that has been filled with political hatred, violence, alternative lifestyles, illicit sexuality, and we lose sight of what says the Word of God. Perhaps a test for today might be that you ask a friend ‘so where are we at today, and where are we headed?’. If their response comes from the Bible, then you are free to start praying for someone else. However, if from their favorite newscaster, or a quote from a recent movie, or from their favorite, passionate politician, then your suspicion will be affirmed that they are being misled by the things of this world, and no longer by the almighty hand of our awesome God. Friends, let’s learn to be God’s children first and foremost. When He says in His Word that He placed our governments in place for His purpose, and we are to pray for our politicians, who are we to reverse that? Children learn from repetitious teachings of parents, teachers and yes – even television shows. As adults, we tend to continue the same learning habits and we practice what we see and hear on a daily basis. Please consider joining me in an effort to not only accept Jesus as Lord, but to live according to His will and purpose, no matter what other doctrines, philosophies, politics, or scandalous news items are thrown at us. Let’s be persistent in our purpose to be more like Jesus in every walk of life and in every word that proceeds from our mouth. Let not our witness be marred by the very evil things that God warns us about in His word. May we welcome each other from all walks of life, no matter their color, political persuasion, or worldly beliefs, since we are all sinners begging at the feet of Jesus for mercy and forgiveness. May we boldly demonstrate Jesus in our actions and in our words, and not be a stumbling block to anyone in search of that same ideal.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: One way to be saved, and only one way to be righteous in God’s sight, so that we may continue to be a respectable witness for our Lord!

PRAYER: Thank You Lord Jesus for including me when You offered up yourself for the sins of the world. Please direct my path as Your follower so that I would never hinder the path of another beggar looking for the rich food of eternal life. Please Lord, direct my path each and every day to feed from Your Word, converse with You about my struggles, my weaknesses, and my desire to be all that You would have me be for the Kingdom. I believe that others reading this devotional today might be challenged in similar ways, so please tender the hearts of the unsaved, and the needy who might be reminded through this. May we all remember the source of our strength, and the One we aim to please, as we seek Your help to put self aside and the many voices that try to distract us daily. May the unsaved see and experience Jesus in us. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

A Framework For Worship

When asked about their time of worship, isn’t it interesting how most Christians today think of the church and its Sunday corporate worship services? Seeing that David directed his thoughts towards his fellow Israelites, I believe it behooves us to also apply this ‘framework of worship’ to ourselves. Notice that this is not a commandment from God, but David spoke these words under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, so I am convinced that they are God-ordained. Take note, and be inspired by God, dear friends!

DATE POSTED Saturday, 2022-08-13
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Pslam 105:1-5
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: Praise the Lord and pray in his name! Tell everyone what he has done.
Sing praises to the Lord! Tell about his miracles.
Celebrate and worship his holy name with all your heart.
Trust the Lord and his mighty power.
Remember his miracles and all his wonders and his fair decisions.

APPLICATION: Some churches have a template for their order of service, so attendees know exactly what to expect. Some churches worship based on the leadership of the Holy Spirit, so it may be challenging to prepare yourself for the next item in the order of service! But what about you and me, what prompts us to worship God, and what might that time of worship look like? Here are some ideas given by David:
-> Praise the Lord!
-> Pray in His name!
-> Share with everyone what He has done!
-> Sing praises to the Lord!
-> Talk about His miracles with everyone!
-> Celebrate and worship Him and His holiness from the depths of your heart!
-> Trust the Lord and His mighty power!
-> Remember, remember, remember – His miracles, His wonders and His fair decisions!
I hope that, like me, you meditated slowly on each of the above. I’m sure that we can all relate to these items in an environment like I mentioned above – at church, and I bet you can even reflect on individuals who do at least one of these things really good. But in this devotional, I believe that God would have us consider, and look inward at our personal times of worship. I’ve said it before, and I’m sure many of you will identify with me – there just isn’t time enough in our day. But let me challenge you like one of my peers did to me at one time – substitute the words ‘I don’t have time’ with ‘That wasn’t a priority for me today’. Each statement means the same thing, but the words help God to identify what the problem is. What if God asked you one night why didn’t you worship Him that day? How will you feel telling Him that it wasn’t a priority for you that day? Can you handle Him saying that He didn’t protect, love, heal, or care for you that day because you weren’t a priority to Him? Those words hurt dear friend. Please think on the Lord throughout your day, and consider praising Him in the storms of life, praying to Him whether you are overwhelmed in joy, sadness or just facing the challenges of life. Be bold in telling others how you’ve seen Jesus in your day, for they will be touched by your experiences a lot more than your stories of how others are impacted. Know that you belong to Him, know that He loves you enough to sacrifice His very life for you, and gladly show your appreciation to Him as you worship Him from the very depths of your heart.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: God is very near, and His love for us is from everlasting to everlasting. He deserves our praise – our individual and personal praise, because He is a vital part of the relationship we enjoy with our Master and Lord.

PRAYER: To God be the glory, great things He has done! Jesus, we love you, we worship and adore You, for we glorify You in everything throughout the day You have blessed us with. That’s our promise Lord, and from this day forward, we cement our relationship with You so that our hearts will overflow with our praises and our worship. Forgive us Lord where we have fallen short on this, and even reneged altogether in our appreciation of, and glorification to, You. As Your child, may it be obvious to You and to the world that Jesus rules and reigns in my heart. Please open the eyes and hearts of my readers and listeners to commit to this promise and may they vow to worship You individually every day. As the lost recognizes the change in us, may they also recognize Jesus and desire a personal relationship with You, Lord. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

How To Fight Our Battles

We are reminded once again that we can look to God’s Word for guidance on every situation in life, especially in ministry for our Lord. Though times have changed, and worldly weapons have modernized, yet the child of God must be guided by the Word of God more today than ever before. Wouldn’t we have a much different world if Christians, and especially church leadership, would simply commit to read, seek to understand, and always promise to follow God’s guidance given in His Word? Read on and seek God to help you accurately and honestly evaluate your actions, and those of your church.

DATE POSTED Friday, 2022-08-12
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 2 Corinthians 10:3-6
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: We live in this world, but we don’t act like its people or fight our battles with the weapons of this world. Instead, we use God’s power that can destroy fortresses. We destroy arguments and every bit of pride that keeps anyone from knowing God. We capture people’s thoughts and make them obey Christ. And when you completely obey him, we will punish anyone who refuses to obey.

APPLICATION: Try to imagine serving on a church board where you might be asked to pray for, encourage and give godly wisdom to your pastor on what you feel God would have his role be as a humble and obedient servant. Some among his disciples would want him to be more aggressive, but some may want him to be more docile, with hopes of calming down the rough edges of those who are very vocal. Some leaders will want the pastor to stand firm against all apparent wrong-doing, while some will want him to ‘roll with the flow’ and try to accept this modern age of unusual adult and children behavior. But I want to encourage you to join me in looking at what Paul exampled before us as a mighty warrior for the Kingdom. In our Scripture today, Paul is responding to claims coming back to him from the church at Corinth where they felt like he was bold, and very critical to say anything in his letters to the church, but not so much when he visited them in person. I immediately thought of an old saying ‘idleness is the Devil’s workshop’! For if this congregation was busy about the mission of Jesus Christ, and determined to tell the world about His love and His saving grace, will they possibly have time for such petty accusations against this proven man of God? But before you become any more judgmental of the Corinthian church, let me encourage you to examine yourself, and then your church. How many conversations have you had, or been a part of, where the pastor was being criticized for something very petty? Perhaps the clothes he wore; perhaps condemning him for the example used in his sermon; the song he wanted sung that morning; the hug he gave to Sue, but not even a smile or handshake to you; I’m sure you get the picture. Do you get the impression that Paul would have nipped much of this in the bud, seeing that nothing good could come out of such conversation and accusations? Isn’t it obvious that Paul promoted the positive impact of what the church should have on its members and in the community in which it serves? I was so impressed with the very last sentence in our verses today. It is so easy for church leaders to condemn their pastor, but wouldn’t things change a bit if they were told that they should get their act together and be in full compliance with God’s laws before trying to impose even stricter laws on their members? For those readers and listeners who do not attend a church where they are aware of similar challenges to these, please rejoice in the fact that you are far enough removed from church politics! I am convinced that unless you are able to worship God together with other believers and be of one mind and spirit, then Satan will easily find room for a wedge to cause division and fraction between you. And that’s where you personally, and the church collectively, loses its witness to the lost for which you are intended to save. I love the new contemporary Christian song that includes the lyrics about solving your issues on your knees – that’s where God can open your eyes, and the eyes of any offender. Live in the world my friend, but be a light in the darkness to those with bad intentions.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Paul said that he used God’s power, that can destroy fortresses – those that Satan erects to destroy the witness of the church and its members, to destroy arguments and division!

PRAYER: Precious Lord, You are worthy of our praise and greatly to be glorified here on earth. In so many cases, we have not been good stewards of Your church, and we have not touched the hearts of the lost because of our own disobedience and lack of commitment to You and Your kingdom’s work. Please forgive us Lord and raise up leaders around us that will totally commit themselves to You and be in full compliance to Your Word, so that they will be respected and obeyed in Your church. The world is watching, because they want to find proof of what a blood saved church looks like. Lord may the words from my lips, and the thoughts from my heart be acceptable to You, my Rock and my Redeemer. May I then, be the first of many who will say like Paul, do as I do and not just what I say. May they always see Jesus in us! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Reasons To Praise The Lord

I know, you are told by your Worship Leader to sing, lift up your hands, shout to the Lord, pray, and engross yourself in the spoken Word. If you participate, you probably leave church that day feeling like you have truly worshipped! I’m not your judge, but that is probably the best means of corporate worship, as we know and experience it today. But in our Scripture, I believe that David reminds us of the reasons we might individually, one-on-one with God, worship Him. Join me as we meditate on what the Bible says about this important aspect of expressing praises to our God.

DATE POSTED Thursday, 2022-08-11
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Psalm 104:1; 33-35
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)

BIBLE TEXT: Let all that I am praise the Lord. O Lord my God, how great you are! You are robed with honor and majesty.
33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live. I will praise my God to my last breath!
34 May all my thoughts be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.
35 Let all sinners vanish from the face of the earth; let the wicked disappear forever.
Let all that I am praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord!

APPLICATION: As I read through Psalm 104 today, I felt God tugging at my heart about my level of praise to Him versus what I discerned from David’s walk with, and worship of God. My first conclusion was that Satan has put so much in our lives that distract us from God, that if it wasn’t for the church/worship service that some of us schedule into our busy calendars, we may not be disciplined enough to worship our Creator at all. To understand where I am coming from with this wild thought, please take a moment to slowly read through Pslam 104 – just 35 short verses, but try to read it without distractions – just a time with you and God. I saw David spending time outdoors and being blessed by all that he was reminded that his Creator put together to draw him to God. We see expressions and descriptions of clouds, trees, light, the starry skies, wind, mountains, valleys and floods, animals, streams, trees and their branches, grass, plants that produce food, olive trees and the uses of Olive Oil, night and the animals that come alive in the darkness, lions as they sought their prey, dusk with the purpose of drawing attention to a time to shut themselves down for the day, the ocean and how it contains seafood for our tables and provides a base for vessels to move along on. Oh my dear friends, do you see why David had so much to converse with God about and sing endless praises to Him! Now, compare that with the choices you made yesterday! Did you have time to look around and enjoy God’s creation during your commute to work? Did you look for God’s character in your coworkers, or did Satan distract you with their flaws? Did you get outside for lunch, or was that your time to catch up on social media? Did you take time to sit with your family and enjoy an evening meal, or you just couldn’t miss your favorite television show? Did you choose something to watch on TV that helped to draw you to God, or were the other shows much more entertaining? At the end of such a wild and busy day, what were you able to kneel and thank God for that day? Were you able to celebrate and praise Him for His involvement in your life, and the sweet communion you had with Him? Did you deliberately look for, and experience God through something, or someone that He created? I believe that in much the same way that we map out time in our day for our spouse, children, sports, church, school, etc. we must also keep high on our priority list – intimate time with the Lord – time to hear from Him through His written Word; time to talk with Him through prayer; time to praise Him through spending time admiring His handiwork and His provisions for us. Let us learn from the Psalmist and the way he started and ended Pslam 104 ‘Let all that I am, praise the Lord’! Perhaps if we started and ended our day with similar words, we will draw closer to God than we are today!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Let all that I am praise the Lord! A goal that we could set to change our outlook on every day, while teaching us to fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith!

PRAYER: Lord, I believe You must look at us – Your creation, Your children, and shake Your head while saying to us ‘enough with the excuses. I created you to honor and praise Me, and I pour out my blessings on you every day so that you will force yourself to honor Me with your praises, yet you refuse’. While challenging to imagine a God who reaches a frustration stage with us, I believe You have every reason to. Thank You Lord for Your mercies on me, Your sacrifice for me, Your provisions for me every day, and for Your unconditional love extended to me – even when my earthly friends turn away. You are God, and beside You there is no other. Please Lord, teach us to truly love, sincerely pray, and to worship You with all our heart, soul and mind each and every day. Each day You remember to wake us up and without failing in the least, You provide so much for us to enjoy. The reasons to worship and praise You are unlimited, if we set aside earth’s distractions and concentrate on You. Lord, we love You. Please help us to show that love in meaningful ways today! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

The Results Of Giving

I pray that one more discussion on ‘giving’ will not provoke you to avoid today’s blog and move on to something more joyful and self-gratifying. For I found this reminder more rewarding in being reminded of the results of my giving. I believe that in sharing this with you today, we will all reaffirm our reason for giving to God’s work and purposes. Seek God’s direction on this as you meditate with me. Let Him direct you for any changes that need to occur in your life as it regards giving.

DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2022-08-10
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 2 Corinthians 9:7-8; 11-13;
TRANSLATION: Good News Translation (GNT)

BIBLE TEXT: You should each give, then, as you have decided, not with regret or out of a sense of duty; for God loves the one who gives gladly. And God is able to give you more than you need, so that you will always have all you need for yourselves and more than enough for every good cause. 
11 He will always make you rich enough to be generous at all times, so that many will thank God for your gifts …. 12 For this service you perform not only meets the needs of God’s people, but also produces an outpouring of gratitude to God. 13 And because of the proof which this service of yours brings, many will give glory to God for your loyalty to the gospel of Christ, which you profess, and for your generosity in sharing with them and everyone else. 

APPLICATION: There are many negative ideas out there about giving to the church. So, let’s remind ourselves that ‘the church’ is considered ‘the Bride of Christ’, as referred to in Scripture. Churches are made up of sinners saved by grace, just like you, if you claim Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Just as you find yourself doing or saying things that may not be pleasing to God, you will also find that church members, and even church leaders, sometimes fall into that same trap as well. So, remember to look at the four fingers pointing back at you when you cast judgment on the unfortunate actions or words of your fellow church members or leaders. Satan will tempt you to find excuses on why you shouldn’t give to the local church, because his job is to kill, steal and destroy the work of our Lord, especially through the local church. Be reminded that in our Scripture verses today, there were no filters offered by God on why, when or how you should refuse to give to His work. But there is a promise – if you do your part and give freely to the work of God in His church, He will bless you in your earnings and He will pour out even more blessings for you to share! Know that God has a promised accountability for His children. Scripture records how: He will crown those who have accepted Him and live according to Word; He will judge us all and will give us what we deserve; etc. He will judge those who: have disobeyed His Word; stole from His treasury; been a stumbling block to those seeking to Know Jesus; gave to His church as instructed by God; grudgingly give to the church; refuse to give to the church; meet the needs of those who need a hand up. etc. So, let’s try to get away from trying to do God’s work for Him, for He is more than adequate to be our Judge, Jury and Sentencer. We have more than enough to worry about in our own lives, much more than trying to be God in sentencing our pastor, elders, deacons, church, etc. Dear friends, each of us will appear before God to give an account of our own lives, not as a witness or tell-tale of those we’ve been watching here on earth. In giving a gift, we often prefer to have guidance on how much to give. This is also covered in the Bible – 10% of your income, is our guide. Some may ask: ‘Of my gross or net salary?’. Notice that the Bible to specifically check our conscience. This is where the Holy Spirit resides, and He will guide us to the Scriptures for our answers. The Bible tells us make our gift to God from the ‘first fruits’. In farming, that equates to the first 10% of your harvest. In a paycheck, I can only share with you what I felt God nudging me to do – 10% of the first fruits – the amount before anyone else gets anything from my income, or the gross amount of my check. Let me challenge you dear friend in reminding you that we cannot outgive God. If He said that He will multiply our harvest so that we could give even more, then He will do that, whether we give 10, 20, 30% or even more. In the Scriptures, we are told to try Him and see if He won’t bless us with more than we could handle! If my suggestion sounds outrageous, let me suggest that you have a little talk with Jesus and share with Him what your reservations are in obeying any of my above guidance. A heart dedicated to God, caring about His work in our lives and in the lives of those around us, will give willingly, freely and exceedingly. Where do you stand if you had to explain to God what’s impacting Your heart to give freely in return for all He has blessed you with? I believe that’s where our giving originates, is from a heart filled with love for God and appreciation for all He has blessed us with. As covered already, the excuses and reasons that interfere with our giving is prompted by Satan – as it opposes what is taught in God’s Word.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: God will always make you rich enough to be generous at all times, so that many will thank God for your gifts! What an awesome inducement to give even more to God’s work, including to His children in need! Praise and thanksgiving will go up for us as others are blessed! Wow, no wonder we get unexpected raises!

PRAYER: Lord, we realize that there is no way that we could repay You for the many wonderful gifts that You make available to us, especially the gift of Your precious Son given for our eternal salvation. Please help us to always give thanks for the ways that You bless us, and to always share of those gifts with others in our circle of friends and family. What a joy to be reminded by Your servant, Paul, that recipients of our earthly gifts find reason to praise You, and to ask for Your continued gifts to the giver. Praise You Father, Son and Holy Spirit for invoking in us a heart of giving, in recognition of, and in celebration of the many ways that You bless us. As vessels of Your love, please teach us to be open to the ways we can give to bless your children in need, and the ongoing work of Your church. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

The Greatest Commandments

The religious teacher wanted to know which commandment had the greatest meaning or should have lasting effect on believers. As we meditate on the Word today, let’s not just look for the important keywords, but try to make what’s important to God, also important to us. We will see that Jesus wanted us to make our vertical relationship most important in life, but to show proof of that in our horizontal relationship with others.

DATE POSTED Tuesday, 2022-08-09
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Mark 12:28-31
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT: 28 One of the teachers of religion who was standing there listening to the discussion realized that Jesus had answered well. So he asked, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29 Jesus replied, “The one that says, ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only God. 30 And you must love him with all your heart and soul and mind and strength.’
31 “The second is: ‘You must love others as much as yourself.’ No other commandments are greater than these.”

APPLICATION: It sounds like the teacher of religion was very much like us today. How often do we ask people who tend to blunder on about something ‘just cut to the chase and tell me what’s most important here’! It’s like we might try to master one thing, the most important thing, but don’t make me have to read the whole book, or listen to the whole recording, just give me a synopsis of what’s important! I believe Jesus took full advantage of this man’s question, but I found His response interesting in the following ways:
a. Jesus could have lectured all day, but when a question came from the audience, I believe that the crowd identified with the teacher and would have been very interested in the response. In our church Bible studies, we don’t want to seem stupid by asking questions, but we sure sit upright and listen intently at responses to questions from others in the class. It’s like, that person is representing us, and I want to know the answer to their question.
b. Jesus’ response identified the commandment that pertained to the One in whom Jesus placed His faith and trust. Remember Jesus said that He didn’t speak unless it was the words from His Father. Jesus didn’t know the day or the hour of His return, only God did. And although there are many other references that show the importance Jesus saw in the leadership of our Father, I believe it is important for us to take note that in all areas of life, seek God’s will and His decision – first. When we love someone, like the greatest commandment demands of us with God, we will want to run everything by them first. When we remember the awesome power and the breadth of God’s love for us, we will want to honor Him by obeying His commands.
c. Jesus really saw 2 commandments as ‘important’ to us, so He took the opportunity to tell the teacher about them both, as He considered them equal in importance: God loved us enough that He gave…. As His children, we are to imitate Him and show obedience to His commands so that our lives might reflect His character. Think about this: if God chose to love us, save us, send His Son to die for us, and prepared a home for our arrival in heaven, shouldn’t our lives reflect the same characteristics? We weren’t deserving of such love, yet we were given the status of ‘heirs to His kingdom’. Who are we to be more critical, or selective about which neighbors, coworkers, or friends to love and/or care for?
Jesus said that among all the other commandments, these two were the greatest. In Matthew 22:40 Jesus said that all other commandments hang from these two commandments. Consider these two as the ‘root commandments’ and watch how all the others could branch off from these two! So let me encourage you to work diligently at honoring God through these two commandments, and if along the way you find yourself wavering on any of the others, then go back to the root commandment and make sure you are aligned with God in obeying them first.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Praise God for His guidance in helping us get our priorities straight. Two commandments – honor these and we should find that all others fall into place!

PRAYER: Oh though so unworthy, yet I’m a child of the King! Thank You Lord for these words from an old chorus that reminds us of whose we are. Being comforted by these words, we are free to not only honor our God, but also reflect His love for us, to all that we come into contact with (our neighbors). You never questioned our background, our living conditions, our neighbors, or our pastors – You just answered our quest for eternal life and our need for forgiveness of our sin. In trying to imitate Your awesome example, please Lord, help us to be just as indiscriminate about our neighbors. No matter who they are, or from whence they came, they are our neighbor, and they deserve our love and respect. May they see Jesus in us, as we try to love them for who they are, and not what we want them to be. As they see Jesus, may they have a burning desire to know You Lord, for this is my heartfelt prayer today! AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

The Wonderful Love of God

Instead of writing a blog today, I was tempted to simply share Psalm 103 with you, because the heart of David really impacted my heart today. I pray that today you will also sacrifice the time and make it a priority to meditate on the love, sacrifice, forgiveness and heart of God for His children. Especially His love for you, my friend!

DATE POSTED Monday, 2022-08-08
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: Psalm 103:1-2; 11-12;
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)

BIBLE TEXT: With all my heart I praise the Lord,
and with all that I am I praise his holy name!
With all my heart I praise the Lord!
I will never forget how kind he has been.
11 How great is God’s love for all who worship him?
Greater than the distance between heaven and earth!
12 How far has the Lord taken our sins from us?
Farther than the distance from east to west!

APPLICATION: Unless you live in a bubble, I’m sure you are well aware that as you walk out of your homes today, you will need every ounce of strength, encouragement and wisdom to deal with the enemy and everything that he will throw at you. From backstabbing to back-biting. From jealousy to revenge. From personal attacks to paybacks. No, I’m not a prophet of doom, but instead a realist who believes the proven Word of God. Satan has no reason to be kind to you for attending worship services over the weekend, for being kind to your neighbor, and for showing love even to that person who tries hard to pull you down. So, in case you are wondering what a child of God is supposed to do in a world filled with so much hatred and sin, let me encourage you to imitate the Psalmist, obey the teachings of Jesus Christ, and learn so much about the character of God that you will beg Him to help you live just like Him. Be aware dear friend, that Satan will impress upon you that there is nothing to praise the Creator for. Please know that greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world! There is no greater love! There is no greater power! There is no one who can forgive you of your sin and ungodliness but our God! My friend, as you leave the safety and serenity of your own home and venture out to work, or complete your chores, know that you are only safe in the arms of Jesus! No one else cares like Jesus! These things that I’ve mentioned, are just examples of what you might praise God for. Draw close to God, and He will draw close to you. Worship Him! Sing praises to Him! Tell Him how you feel! Ask for His blessing! Anticipate His answers to your prayers! Embrace the love that He showers on you each and every day! There is no greater love, my friend! Know Him today (‘To Know Jesus’) and experience the love that the Father has for His child. Be willing and ready to pass that love along to others you will come into contact with.

BLESSING(S) NOTED: God’s love is greater than the distance from heaven to earth! All other love can only be compared to the perfect love the Father has for His children!

PRAYER: It is virtually impossible to know the extent of the love the Father has for His children. We hear about it, and we experience it, but I believe that’s only a touch of the real love that You have for us Lord Jesus! We live in such a sinful and hateful world, and it is so refreshing to be reminded that there is One so much greater than anything we experience in this world. Oh, how we love You Lord, how we sing Your praises and stand in awe of your greatness. Please Lord, revive us again so that we might draw closer to You and experience the fullness of Your love. May we be so full of You today that others will experience it in and through us. Bless Your people again today and may we in turn be a blessing to others. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!

Generous Giving

What do you suppose a successful church looks like? What do you suppose God might consider a successful church? In trying to strengthen the churches in Macedonia, Paul very happily shared with them the areas of ministry that he saw them exceling in, but he didn’t want them to relax and be satisfied until they looked inward at their giving for the ongoing work of the kingdom. Let’s try to look inward today as we meditate on God’s Word, and also look inward on the principles of our church in giving to the ministry of Christ.

DATE POSTED Sunday, 2022-08-07
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL

SCRIPTURE FROM: 2 Corinthians 8:7-8
TRANSLATION: Living Bible (TLB)

BIBLE TEXT: You people there are leaders in so many ways—you have so much faith, so many good preachers, so much learning, so much enthusiasm, so much love for us. Now I want you to be leaders also in the spirit of cheerful giving. I am not giving you an order; I am not saying you must do it, but others are eager for it. This is one way to prove that your love is real, that it goes beyond mere words.

APPLICATION: It seems like this is one of the most controversial subjects in the church world today. Some accuse the church of stealing money from its members, while some even accuse the church of charging their members to attend. My wife and I were warned not to attend a certain church, because they ‘charged a fee’ to its members to attend! However, what I was excited to hear Paul teach in 2 Corinthians 8, was that giving starts from a heart of love. You might be tempted to question this philosophy of Paul’s, because you have never heard of anyone jumping for joy as they gave their hard-earned money away. And that is the best starting place for us to examine this teaching, for Christians give from a heart of love and appreciation for all that was given for them. But your first response might be: ‘the church has never given anything to you or your family’. Friends, if a Christian gives because of what the church has done, or has given to them, then they are giving for the wrong reason. We give because God gave sacrificially of His very best to us, so that we would have the means of forgiveness of our sin, and therefore a pass into the glories of heaven. Think about it. In our homes, we give, and give and give, because of the love given to us in so many ways by family members. The same is true in our churches. Shouldn’t we also honor God by doing the same in return for His wonderful gifts to us? I believe where we go astray in our giving, is when Satan redirects our attention to church leaders who abuse funds given to the ministry; churches whose members approved expensive, fancy, church buildings over giving generously to their community in need, or to the needs that exists in the mission field. If we attended church business meetings, or if we participated in electing church leaders to handle the church budget, then WE decided on those actions mentioned. If we don’t participate in church leadership decisions, then we obviously don’t care to change anything they propose and decide on. Please allow me to suggest that you not complain, whine or be concerned about bad decisions if you chose to not participate to ensure the best decision for the sake of the Kingdom. I am convinced that ‘giving’ begins in the heart of each believer, as prompted by the Word of God, and His Holy Spirit that dwells inside of us. As in the example of our homes – as we draw close to God, feel His love and appreciate His goodness, is there anything that we wouldn’t give in return? As a responsible member of your church, is there anything that you wouldn’t encourage and vote for your church to give generously to in growing the Kingdom of God? With God as our helper, may we learn to appreciate all that He gives to us, and in return, give generously to expand His Kingdom while we remain here on this earth!

BLESSING(S) NOTED: Prove your love for God in the way that you give generously to expanding His Kingdom here on earth.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for giving of Your very life so that we might have eternal life. Out of sacrificial love, You gave it all for us. Thank You Jesus! Please touch the heart of Your children today and help us to regain our focus on You and stop allowing Satan to distract us and steer us to live, act, speak, and respond to the wicked ways of this world. Father God, You gave us everything You had, please teach us to prioritize our giving so that our output will indicate where our love belongs. AMEN!

FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!